Woman seeking $1.75 million after SLO County firefighter fondled breasts

June 9, 2021

James Peter Thomas


An employee of the Cal Fire station in Los Osos filed a $1.75 million claim against the department after a fire captain allegedly stuck his hand up her shirt and pulled on her nipples.

The woman – whose name is blacked out in her May 11 claim against Cal Fire, San Luis Obispo County and the Los Osos Community Services District – said then Captain James Peter Thomas, 56, walked up to her desk on Dec. 2, said “hi,” and attempted to give her a hug. Thomas then allegedly stuck his hand up the woman’s shirt and began tugging on her nipples, according to the claim.

The suit accuses Thomas of telling the female employee, “I never felt nipples like that before” and “I don’t know why I did that.” Later in the day, Thomas allegedly asked the woman to tell him “bye before she left for the day and left his phone number on a post-it note.”

A week later, the female employee reported the alleged sexual assault to the SLO County Sheriff’s Office. Detectives arrested Thomas on Dec. 14 for sexual battery and booked him in the SLO County Jail. He has since been released from custody.

Thomas retired from the San Luis Obispo County Fire Department several days after his arrest.

In January, Thomas pled not guilty to a single misdemeanor count of sexual battery.

The claim says that government officials failed to “take reasonable measures to protect claimant from Captain James Peter Thomas.”

If the claim is not accepted, the female employee plans to file a lawsuit against Cal Fire, the Los Osos CSD, SLO County and the city of SLO for compensatory and punitive damages. The Los Osos CSD Board voted last week to deny the claim.


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The female employee should get all of his assets (home, car etc.) including his retirement and a major portion of all his future earnings but 1.75 million of taxpayer’s money that should be used to fight fires? Nope.


Don’t you think that’s excessive, assuming he did what she said he did?

You are seriously advocating ruining a persons life for brief period of stupidity. A person works 30 years, plus or minus, and you think he should be destroyed, because he groped a woman? Really? Hell, murderers get out after 7-10 years.

Do you feel just as unforgiving about all of these “progressive” lawmakers ( and our Governor) who want to let rapists an violent felons out on society after serving just a portion of their sentence.


Sexist bully creating a hostile workplace for sure if he did it, but 1.75 million dollars. Come on


Always a little more to the story than what you read. Dude’s reputation is ruined regardless.


Why would he care? He is retired, likely collecting a pension of at least $120,000 in compensation from the taxpayers from a broken system that is several billion already underfunded.


Thanks for keeping us abreast in the news!

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